4. Your most important decision as a piano teacher

Music is only songs. To learn music, you learn songs.

I mean “song” in the colloquial sense, which includes any piece of music even though not all musical pieces are sung.

This is a pretty simple idea, but it took me years to figure out. I thought I had to learn exercises, warmups, scales, riffs, chords, improvisation, ear training, history, and theory as separate, discrete subjects.

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1. The key to success

When you decide to teach piano lessons, the freedom is appealing. You can create your own schedule and even quit your day job. No boss!

However, such freedom can also be terrifying. There is no guaranteed income. Instead of one boss, you have twenty or thirty: your clients.

So how do you build a thriving studio you can depend on? How do you attract new students? And how do you ensure that, when summer vacation comes, your students stay with you instead of scattering to the four winds?

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